Labor Rising Logo
Call (630) 373-0774

Work to the Rule for R&F – and – Follow the Money IP’s & Management –

Many great hands that understand this – think of Work to the Rule in Collective Bargaining terms. They are smart to do so. Under Collective Bargaining, much of it, would NOT be “PROTECTED ACTIVITY” under more traditional work to the rule campaigns. Google this term. An education of the Rank & File is underway and foundational to changing our trades back into a MOVEMENT!

DO NOT try to enforce the CBA and/or grievances terms and procedures under a “WORK TO THE RULE” campaigns until we have much better understanding of these terms and the tactics needed to win because the R&F have no one covering their back!

So, let’s follow the money and understand what work to the rule in this blog means. Right now, and for the last 5 plus decades our Senior International leadership has managed to lose Labor/Management cases/deals/negotiations most of the time. Even when locals/DC’s have given the International a winning hand. Take the Book of Decisions for example –  management has won almost the entirety of all decisions for decades. We place that number at approx. 85%. And the complete lack of ability of senior leaders to win – emerges! Well then who benefited from those decisions – follow the money! This pattern of sell out/moneyed interests/politics/sheer ineptness repeats itself in the governance of organizing, pensions, H&W, bargaining and grievances. In upcoming blogs, you the reader will decide how extensive and long tenured senior leaderships “good ole boys” are!

So – now on the SAFETY! Work to the Rule is a misnomer by and large in this case. We need to be SMART and not cross thread our “other” issues with any and everyone. For example, safety concerns on a jobsite has nothing to do with pay, benefits, conditions, hiring, firing, the hall, the agents, etc.

Everyone reading this blog has signed off many times regarding SAFETY on the job NOW being OUR responsibilities. These are managements documents, supported by senior trades leadership! Management enforces safety to the letter when anyone of us are inured. So, why wouldn’t we?

As you Google OCIP and CCIP, you will be schooled on the sheer amount of profits these sponsoring management entities are raking in; with senior trades leaderships either tacit and/or explicit collaboration!

Think of classifications of workers. The trades have bent over backwards to create new and lower paying classifications. Workers comp in most states is based on payroll and classification in the Workers Comp code. Who has the prime mover of this reclassification been? Management can demand both of these ongoing concessions from the trades because of the sheer — fill in the blank here regarding senior trades leadership. And since the bigger jobs are almost always wrapped in either a OCIP or CCIP can now reap profits that in some cases exceed construction profits.

Senior leadership and many underinformed downstream leaders have used the term – being competitive. And yet, every number, in every environment, has shown that strategy to be an abject loser. Rank & File lose and management and 6 figure trades leadership benefits. Our Founders NEVER acknowledged – being competitive. It is the rabbit hole of weak organizations and leaders; and IS the race to the bottom!

Senior trades leadership uses the warm and fuzzy of safety while all the while knowing that management is transferring site safety to individual members.

So, Brother and Sister – consider strongly how much longer you individually let this happen, given the documents you have signed!

On the job – great hands do all sorts of activities to get the job done. Those activities are thought to be professional. And yet in court room after court room workers are losing when injured.

Many R&F wait until the site safety people are not around and or station a watch. Many feel we are being questioned as professionals. It is demeaning to many hands, that most site safety people haven’t a clue what safety is. And yet, we lose in the court room and we and our families go broke in the process.

Here is how I would describe the site safety rules. All of us are familiar with Blueprints. Question, are you covered by following the prints – and BTW to the letter, or not? We all know the answer to that. We also know that when the prints are out of step with reality, to get management to sign off on it before proceeding.

So, when it comes to safety on the jobsite – do exactly what you/we signed off on, and are responsible for.

Get the management teams that are quite often in conflict with each other, to get on the same page – or wait until they are. Get the site safety people to tell you specifically what is needed, and how specifically it should be done. Get real time notes and signatures on job site safety analysis, and have the safety team watch us in our tasks. Don’t need to be friends – just responsible for their jobs, which is safety!!

Now they are directly linked to the responsibly of that job – should an accident occur.

This should be ORGANIC in nature – by the R&F hands on any given job. Which means every hand from Western Canada to the Gulf Coast should dig out all that paperwork you have signed and revisit it. And ALL conflicts both seen and unforeseen on the site should be addressed in a written policy and/or waiver before we do our work.

Also, it has been my experience in several situations that safety and management people conveniently disappear when production and deadlines are looming and hard dollars are at issue.

That is not a time to step up and be a professional and your family hangs in the balance should an accident occur. This is the time to engage management and safety to the fullest degree on what specifically needs to be done and sign off on it!

My gang had a coal chute drop on the floor at a refinery one time. And every safety precaution including some H2S protocols all gone! The refinery needed that chute back up now! We walked!

So, for decades the erosion of wages and classifications has been underway with our very own senior leadership in full knowledge of what was going down. All for hours!

Any time any of them want to compare notes/facts/hard numbers – let us know. Labor Combat produced a 474-page manuscript of research from 2007 till our inception in May of 2012. It is the Foundation for the Labor Combat, Labor Rising and Black Ops programs.

Those that did the work, though we knew a lot of the inner workings of the Internationals back then in 2012. Well after teaching in the field for 5 years and interacting first hand with hundreds of tradespersons, agents, organizers, etc., have found out just how extensive the good ole boys and that culture/network is!

 “if you see a good fight – get in it”

Danny L Caliendo
Labor Combat/Labor Rising

This entry was posted in Labor Rising and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.